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Germany in the near future: When supernatural beings come out of the closet and reveal themselves as having lived among humanity all along, the country quickly adjusts to the new reality after some initial uproar. Romances between humans and supernaturals soon become common, such as the relationship between Lina, a human single mother, and Albrecht, a nightmare demon.But Albrecht's and Lina's love is threatened when they leave Berlin for Lina's home village in rural North Germany. For it turns out that the village is suffused with an ancient magic, a warding spell specifically designed to keep nightmares out. This is a short story of 5800 words or approx. 20 print pages.
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Albrecht, the Nightmare
by Cora Buhlert
Copyright © 2015 by Cora Buhlert
All rights reserved.
Pegasus Pulp Publications
Albrecht, the Nightmare
All in all, the great supernatural coming out of 2020 was a much bigger success than anybody could have anticipated.
After the initial announcement in Germany’s biggest tabloid, there were extensive debates everywhere. For maybe two months every single political talk show in the country discussed a variation of the subject “Do supernatural beings have a place in our society?” Though the TV producers had stopped inviting actual supernatural beings to these talk shows after a massive debacle when Günther Jauch was seen interviewing empty air for ten minutes, because vampires couldn’t be caught on camera. Jauch himself later insisted that it was the best interview he’d ever done, but since no one had seen or heard anything, there was unfortunately no way of proving that assertion.
The Federal German Parliament got into the act as well and came to the conclusion that as long as they had a German passport, supernatural beings were indeed German citizens, a decision later confirmed by the Supreme Court. Of course, it wasn’t as if parliament had any choice in the matter, considering that several members of parliament were revealed to be supernatural beings themselves, including a former secretary of finance, who — it turned out — had been a werewolf all along.
Once the official status of supernaturals had been confirmed by the Federal German Parliament, supernaturals began outing themselves in countries all over the world, much to the embarrassment of those pundits and politicians who had insisted that “that sort of thing” was unthinkable in their own countries.
Of course, there also was opposition, as might have been expected. In Dresden, a group calling themselves PEADO — Patriotic Europeans Against the Demonisation of the Occident — held a few marches and candlelight vigils. They eventually stopped, when the patriotic Europeans got bored of standing around in the cold every Monday night. Not to mention that several of the brave and patriotic Europeans became rather nervous when vampires and werewolves started hanging out at the edges of their marches, staring hungrily at the protesters.
A few hate crimes against supernaturals were registered as well. There was a wave of stake attacks against vampires, all unsuccessful, because regular humans are simply to slow to do much harm to a vampire. And in Hoyerswerda — where else? — a skinhead tried to stab a werewolf with a silver fork and was promptly eaten for his trouble. The resulting trial was a media sensation, but eventually the judge came to the conclusion that eating skinheads was indeed self-defence, provided the skinheads attacked first.
But in general, the country quickly adjusted to the presence of its new supernatural citizens. Within weeks of the announcement, humans and supernaturals alike were partying in the secret underground vampire clubs of Berlin and only a handful of people got bitten, all voluntarily. Restaurants began offering fresh blood and raw meat on their menus and added warning labels for garlic. Grocery stores soon followed suit. Someone started a petition to remove roadside crosses, since they were upsetting vampires.
In March 2021, a vampire family moved into the soap opera Lindenstraße, played by human actors alas, because technology still hadn’t found a way around the problem of capturing vampires on any kind of recording media. In 2023, a zombified ex-celebrity accidentally infected all the contestants of I’m a celebrity — Get me out of here!, causing a zombie hunt in the jungle and promptly giving the fading show its highest ratings ever. At the 2024 Olympics, a selkie won an unprecedented number of gold medals in the swimming competitions.
All in all, it was a good time to be a supernatural. Unless you were Albrecht.
Albrecht was a nightmare. No, not a bad dream or a disaster waiting to happen. Albrecht was a literal nightmare, a shapeshifting demon who visited ladies by night and sat on their chest, while they slept. Usually, he also had sex with them. Sometimes, he braided their hair as well, because he just loved long luscious hair, and — when available — he drank their breast milk, because Albrecht was simply mad about breast milk.
Albrecht had been visiting ladies — as well as the occasional man or horse, when there were no ladies available — for over three centuries, when the great coming out happened. And like all other supernaturals, Albrecht promptly promised to reform. Henceforth, he would only visit willing ladies and all of his nocturnal escapades would be one hundred percent consensual.
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